Togolese duo Toofan’s hit song “Africa Hoyee” is becoming an unofficial anthem for the Africa Nations Cup, which is kicking off January 21 in Equatorial Guinea and Gabon.
The song takes a continent-wide approach to the game, and the video celebrates an atmosphere of joy and hope, said Toofan member Barabas.
“In order to get everyone in the mood, we had to start from the ground, because not everyone is a football player and not everyone can relate to this place of music,” he said. “That’s why we didn’t just do a song with football stars. That’s why in the song, we featured children in a ghetto setting. To show people that in Africa, football comes from the streets first. It’s not something that’s very luxurious.”
Set in Lome, the music video features uniquely stylized dance moves and children playing on makeshift fields in what producer Micheal Kabom said is the ‘cool quartier’ style, drawing from the English word cool and the French word for neighborhood. Kabom, added that even though Togo didn’t qualify for the Africa Nations Cup, Toofan’s song cheers on all the teams of Africa.
“Soccer unites the whole continent of Africa, even though Togo did not qualify for the tournament,” said the producer.
The lyrics mention some of the continent’s most famous players, many of whom will be playing for their countries at the Africa Nations Cup in Gabon and Equatorial Guinea next week.